Leeds United manager Steve Evans has explained his decision to play defender Lewie Coyle out of position in midfield in the 2-1 win over Wolverhampton Wanderers on Tuesday night, as quoted by the Yorkshire Evening Post.
Coyle is a right-back by trade but was utilised in a role on the right side of midfield in the Elland Road victory and put in a competent performance in front of his usual spot on the pitch.
The 20-year-old has made 10 appearances in all competitions for the club's senior side since being handed his debut in December, and made his fourth Championship start against Wolves.
Evans explained that he played the youngster in midfield as he believes learning to be versatile at a young age can be a serious advantage for players, and pointed towards former Whites star Sam Byram as a shining example.
The Leeds boss said, as quoted by the Yorkshire Evening Post: "Lewie Coyle’s natural position is full-back. But very much like we did with Sam Byram, you have to move people around – much like we have done with Lewis Cook.
"You have to if you are going to develop young players; development is the word. You have to see them in different positions. It is not only a position that they will play, but a position they will become familiar to when people play against them. That’s also helpful.
"[Coyle] settled in after about 20 minutes and had a good part in the second half. Very much like Lee [Erwin], we knew it would be a case of how long he would last."
In the event, Coyle lasted 57 minutes before being replaced by Stuart Dallas, and his solid display appears to have encouraged Evans that he deserves to be given more chances in the first team.
Coyle will be hoping to play some part again as the Whites travel to Yorkshire rivals Hull City on Saturday.